Ocean Protection, Ocean Energy
December 09 2013

San Onofre Energy Project Proposed (Again)

by Pete Stauffer

JD Products has again applied to develop an ocean energy project off San Onofre State Beach, just two years after its previous application was terminated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The proposed San Onofre Electricity Farm Project would involve the installation of up to 1,314 generation units in a project area of roughly 6 square nautical miles. The devices would utilize a renewable energy conversion technology that has not yet been tested in the ocean.

In March 2012, FERC terminated the company’s last proposal off San Onofre, citing its failure to prepare environmental baseline information needed to assess potential impacts to the coastal environment. Throughout the permitting process, JD Products consistently failed to address a broad range of issues and concerns raised by government agencies, stakeholders, and the public. The Surfrider Foundation supported FERC’s decision as an organization representing coastal recreational users in the region.

The Surfrider Foundation plans to re-file a motion of intervention with FERC as an interested party that is concerned about impacts to the nearshore environment and recreational users. Every year, millions of people use San Onofre State Beach and the surrounding area for a variety of activities including surfing, diving, fishing, kayaking, beachcombing, and aesthetic enjoyment. These recreational activities generate major economic and social benefits for nearby communities, including San Clemente and the region as a whole.

The Surfrider Foundation approaches all renewable energy projects with an open mind because we believe that they have the potential to provide a sustainable source of clean energy.  However, we also want to make sure that all projects are conducted in a way that takes potential impacts to the coastal environment and recreation into account.

For more information on the project, please visit the FERC website and search for docket number P-13679. 

To read Surfrider’s Policy on Renewable Ocean Energy Click Here